Egypt’s Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) announced on Sunday that the number of births decreased by 1.6 percent in 2017.
The number of births fell to 2.55 million in 2017, compared to 2.6 million in 2016, CAPMAS wrote in the annual Bulletin of Birth and Death Statistics 2017.
The sex ratio at birth was 105 males per 100 females in 2017, the same proportion as 2016.
The number of male births was 1.3 million in 2017 compared to 1.32 million in 2016, a decrease of 1.5%.
CAPMAS noted that Cairo governorate ranked first in the number of births, with 239,112 in 2017.
South Sinai ranked last, with 3,140 births in 2017.
The Egyptian government has spared no effort to promote the importance of a lower population, as the current population strains the country’s resources.
Earlier this year the Ministry of Social Solidarity launched the “Two Is Enough” family planning campaign, aiming to encourage people to have a maximum of two children per family.
The campaign mainly aims to change the perception in rural areas that having small families through birth control is forbidden by religion, hoping to reduce the birthrate there by 2.4 percent.
Overpopulation has been a growing problem in Egypt for a long time. In December 2017, the United Nation released figures predicting the Egyptian population to hit 200 million by the year 2100 according to a BBC report.
According to a statement read by General Abu Bakr al-Gindi, Egypt’s head of CAPMAS in 2014, population growth in Egypt has been out of control for years.
A boom occurred in 2013, which only further complicated the problem; the number of new births that year reached 2.6 million. According to the statement, the boom came at a time when Egypt already struggled to accommodate the existing population’s basic needs.